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Birdhouse Welcome Sign
This charming, easy to make welcome sign is at it's most rustic when made of old barn wood. However, new wood can be used and "weathered" according to the instructions below.
Supplies1 in. x 4 in. x 16 in. board
Cut one end of the board to form the peak of the birdhouse roof. (See below if you need to "weather" new wood.) Approx. 4 in. below the peak, drill a centered hole all the way through. Sand wood lightly and paint inside of hole black to help it show up. If you don't have a drill, you can paint a "fake" hole. First, draw a circle by tracing around one end of a spool of thread or similar object. Fill in the circle with black paint. A thin "crescent" of white along one side will give the hole visual depth. (See illustration.) Attach saw tooth hanger to back of board near the top. Below the hole, hot glue the dowel in place as a perch. Below the perch, draw the letters W-E-L-C-O-M-E, one below the other, spacing the letters evenly and leaving at least ½ inch between the bottom of one and the top of the one below it. Paint the letters any color you would like, then outline them with a thin line of black. Hot glue cedar springs to roof peak, beginning at bottom edge and overlapping each piece enough to cover the end of the stem (stems should run up the peak toward the top). Add small sprigs to cover any stems that show or any gaps. When the roof is covered to your satisfaction, cut a final piece of cedar to 1 inch long and glue it at the point, stem to rear, so that it covers the last of the stems. Glue in a few berries and a few small pieces of statice here and there for added color. Arrange a small group of silk flowers to the left of the perch. Glue another small group to the bottom right of the board. Insert small pieces of cedar, statice, and berries in and around the flowers. Glue a small raffia bow beneath each group of flowers. If you're going to hang your birdhouse outside, spray it with an outdoor matte finish. Hang and enjoy!
To "weather" new wood: mix 2 parts brown paint, 1 part black paint, and 3 parts water. Apply as a stain using a wide brush. Work quickly. Don't worry about uneven coverage or irregularities --- these will only add to the charm. Be sure to do all the edges and the inside of the hole if you drilled it out. Not dark enough to suit you? Reapply the same mixture.